Faith in Science, Threatened Particle Colliders and PCB-Resistant Fish

BY Jenny Marder  February 21, 2011 at 2:15 PM EST

Packing Away the Poison

Science News.jpgAn article in Science News says fish in New York’s Hudson River have developed a resistance to toxic PCBs and other pollutants. The story focuses on the Atlantic tomcod, but also the fish that eat the fish. And as the poisons move up the food chain, so does the likelihood that they will end up on your dinner plate. (Janet Raloff, Science News)

Budget Crunch Could Prematurely Shutter Tevatron

Scientific American.jpgThe proposed budget brings more potential bad news for the U.S. particle collider, Tevatron, after the Department of Energy denied a proposed three-year extension of the collider. Budget cuts proposed by the House also could trigger a forced shutdown of all accelerators and the layoff of 400 employees at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Illinois. (John Matson, Scientific American)

Religion: Faith in Science

Nature News.jpgA Nature News report on the Templeton Foundation, whose self-professed goal is building bridges between science and religion, says that the institution doles out some $70 million in grants but makes some scientists uneasy. Waldrop digs into the why of the issue, the mistrust the organization has faced, and how it’s evolved in response. (Mitchell Waldrop, Nature News)

Exoplanet Explosion Sparks Philosophical Debate

Are we alone in the universe? It’s a question that dominated several on- and off-panel discussions at the American Association for the Advancement of Science meeting last weekend. This piece in the New Scientist focuses on the latest exoplanet discoveries by the Kepler Space Telescope, many of which are still unconfirmed, with a particular focus on KOI 326.01 because of its earthlike qualities. It also offers a look at contrasting views from some high-profile scientists. (Rowan Hooper, New Scientist)

And in case you missed them, some recent pieces from our Science page:

Watson Wins: IBM’s Machine Rages Against Jeopardy! Champs

Helium 3 Shortage Affects National Security, Medicine

Photo Essay: Mars500 ‘Lands’ on the Red Planet

NPR’s Andy Carvin on Tracking and Tweeting Revolutions

Science Alone Won’t Close the Case on Anthrax, Committee Says